September 2010




September 1st.

Well,Into September now and Summer seemed to end in June up here.

Anyway the tomatoes in my polytunnel which to be honest I've neglected are doing really well just planted into the soil.


I'm hoping to enter one or the other of these in my 1st show as a truss of tomatoes class.


I forgot to pick my courgettes so the odd one is turning into a marrow so I'll enter this in the show too.

Starting at last to get loads of these small cucumbers "Marketmore".


The corn I sowed really late has got some cobs developing I think along with the flowers.

Having never grown it before I think that pollen from the flowers falls onto the silks on the cobs to pollenate it ??

Anyway next week is my 1st show so I'll be getting geared up for that.

September 3rd.

I've been running around like a blue arsed fly today getting things ready for my 1st show on Sunday.


Pulled my stump rooted carrots up and was amazed at the size and uniformity so I've got one cracking set of 3 and one reasonable set.


Similarly with my long ones,these are the 1st decent ones I've ever grown and are getting on for 4ft long including roots.


To be honest I'm pretty chuffed with these.


These are now in the bath until tomorrow evening.


Considering I've never grown any shallots for show before I seem to have 4 reasonable sets to enter.


And my onions ,although a little smaller than normal are a good shape and have dried out pretty well.


So that's all the best stuff,Im entering loads of other things like potatoes,cabbages,tomatoes etc etc.

I'll see how I've done on Sunday.

Sept 5th.

Show Day !!!

Today was the day of my local show and although not aparticularly big one It's not the worst,and for some reason this year had the highest amount of entries for over a decade.


I had a peek through the curtains at a distance when they were judging and saw that there were a couple of onions that dwarfed mine and thought ..that's it then,I've got no chance.

I needn't have worried as this was my best show result of all time.


1st with the under 1.5" shallots and a 2nd + 3rd for the large ones.A pleasing one as this was my 1st go at exhibition shallots,many thanks to SmithyVeg for supplying me with the original bulbs.


First in all the 3 potato classes which was a real buzz as this was my 1st attempt at these.

And again thanks to SmithyVeg for explaining how to grow them.

I'm a bloody fast learner....

I even met the guy from JBA Potatoes who actually recognised me from on here, holy cow,small world.

He explained how I could reduce the tiny little dots on the skins and then they'd be better,and how to grow better winstons.Thoroughly decent fella.He also said that my smaller kestrel were about the ideal size,around 200 grammes,so now I know.

Trouble is my head was in bits after finding out I'd won I've forgotten his name and the technical name he gave for them and how to grow better winstons but he said I should store them in dryer peat and not leave 'em out in the rain like I did.

And another veg/show growing blogger Paul turned up too so It was nice to meet him.(sorry I was a bit vague and sweary but I was in shell shock)

Needless to say I will be ordering my spuds from JBA Seed Potatoes next year just as I did this.


first + second in the 2 large onion class,you can see the larger onion to the left but the tops were just folded over and they weren't as uniform as mine were.

So as you can see size isn't everything,shape,uniformity and skin condition are just as important.


Won a local cup for best local exhibit for a tray of 3 veg.


1st for the 4 small onions and a cabbage.


And a 1st for my first ever good set of long carrots.

I couldn't resist a SmithyVeg carrot pose pic.


And the cherry on the top was best veg in show and the NVS Medal for my 3 stump Carrots.

Personally I thought the long ones were better but these were pretty uniform.


So all in all I won 11 firsts,3 seconds and 3 thirds.

Cup for most points in Onion and Shallot classes.

Cup for Best Local Veg.

Cup for best Local Exhibit.

And the main two,Cup for most points in Vegetable section.

NVS Medal for best Exhibit in Veg Section.

So I am naturally chuffed to bits as we had the most exhibits for a decade and It's the first time I've ever got most points in the Veg Show.

Sept 13th.

Well ,tonight I entered some more of my veg at my last but favourite Show.

The Westmorland Horticultural Society Show held this tue and wed in Kendal.

Really good show and some top growers and flower growers who regularly win at Harrogate so I've not got much chance here.

Also the friendliest and most helpful organisers and committee you could imagine which unfortunately isn't the case at some of the other larger shows

Having said that I've put all my eggs in one basket and put together my best ever top tray which I'm really happy with.


Personally I don't think I could ever do a better one than this.


And then the Westmorland Onion Championship which is difficult as you have to get 6 big onions.

2's easy ,3's difficult but 6 is nigh on impossible but I'm resasonably pleased if not as big as last year and some of the necks starting to shrivel a bit the skin colour is the best I've had.

I've also put the long carrots in again which have stored remarkably well in wet compost in a cool spot and after over a week are just as good as last weekend.

I've also put 5 potato classes including 2 plates of different colours as well but had to sacrifice my best coloured set for the top tray as I forgot to put it in the car which I realised after staging the spuds.....oops none for the top tray.What a numpty !!

So all in all I entered 13 classes,If I win 3 I'll be happy.

I think the longest Carrot might be my only banker though.

Sept 14th.

Well,I went along this afternoon to see how I did.



The veg section was absolutely rammed full.


Looked more like a County show.


Loads of entries for all the classes.


And some superb Best in show Leeks.


More spuds than I've ever seen.

So now onto me and my results............


I somehow won 2 firsts 2 seconds and a third plus a Cup for Best Plate of Potates in Show with the White Winstons which was,for me,astounding as a 1st time show spud grower this year.


1st for the 3 long carrots even though they were smaller,1st for the 3 stumps and 1st for the longest by about 2 inches.And I must apologise to fellow grower and blogger James for just pipping him in these 3 classes,you were robbed mate !.


Was narrowly pipped to 2nd in the 4 veg clas and the funniest one of the day was to be disqualified in the 1 big onion,1 under 250g and 1 shallot class for being overweight.

I had a laugh at that one,note to self : weigh onion before entering 256 grammes is too heavy ! dummy


Best in show went to these amazing Leeks,they were not only enormous being about a good 5" across,but perfect to boot.Oh and they weren't mine.


I did manage to defend my Onion Champs but unfortunately unopposed.You got to be in it to win it.


Best one was for my Premier Tray which I won and was full of all my best stuff.

But just 13 points for those onions ???

So I was well chuffed to get 7 firsts and a hand full of other cards from just 14 entries in a really good show.

So that's it show wise for me this year,I must do more next year.


That's everything that's gone on this week folks,thanks a lot for taking a look.

I'll do my best to keep the weekly updates coming,thanks.


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